Weve done several on-line classes
in the past on making homemade pasta. The majority of them
have been an instruction on how to make basic pasta dough
and a brief paragraph and photos on how to make various kinds
of cut pasta. This past month we received an email from one
of our subscribers asking about homemade gluten-free ravioli.
We have several recipes for gluten-free ravioli but most are
of the gourmet type and in this case our subscriber was looking
for a "kid-friendly" ravioli. In response to the
email we realized that the instruction on how to make gluten-free
ravioli was very brief and did not give a step-by-step instruction
on how to make this often missed dish in the gluten-free world.
So thanks to our friend inquiring about gluten-free ravioli
for his child we bring you this months detailed class
on making gluten-free ravioli including a recipe for
our "kid friendly" Cheese Ravioli with Tomato-Meat
Sauce (kid tested and approved!). We hope you enjoy!
Techniques & Tips You Will
- Choosing the appropriate gluten-free
- Essential equipment
- Getting Started
- Making Basic Ravioli
- Tips and shortcuts
Choosing the appropriate gluten-free
Our test kitchens agree that the best
gluten-free flour mix for this pasta recipe is The
Gluten Free Pantrys Country French Bread flour mix.
It is quite easy to work with and produces a perfect pasta
dough. (To purchase this product, visit the Gluten Free Pantry
The traditional way of preparing fresh pasta
is to place the flour on a flat surface, make a well in the
center and add the eggs and oil. In order to alleviate the
pain and frustration I expected to encounter with this method,
I went straight to my trusty, old food processor and found
the results to be more than satisfying.
Avoid automatic pasta machines that mix
and then expel the finished pasta. You will find the results
are not as good as pasta rolled out through a hand-crank machine.
Luckily the cost of a hand-crank pasta machine is very reasonable.
Note: Never wash a hand-crank pasta machine with water
the flour will freeze up the roller. Instead simply dust off
the pasta machine with a clean, dry cloth.
Since making homemade pasta can be a little
bit of an ordeal not something that you can just whip
out at a moments notice, but rather something to plan
for and enjoy the process in and of itself it is essential
to be organized. Read through the recipe in its entirety and
plan ahead so everything comes out when its needed.
For instance, for purposes of this class we will be making
our Cheese Ravioli with Tomato-Meat Sauce. There are several
steps to this process (none too difficult, but time should
be allowed and expected for several of the steps). For this
recipe we will be performing the following steps in the order
- Make the pasta dough and let it rest
for 30 minutes.
- Make the Tomato-Meat sauce this
needs to simmer for at least 30 minutes so it can be cooking
while we make the remaining parts of the recipe.
- Make the Filling
- Make the sheets of pasta
- Cut and fill the ravioli
- Cook the ravioli
As you can see everything is prepared in
an orderly fashion and if prepared in this sequence every
element has time to do what it needs to do to contribute to
the finished dish. Planning your recipe this way (and this
holds true for any recipe) will help you avoid feeling rushed,
overcooking or undercooking something and ensures your timing
is perfect. So lets begin!
Step 1: Make the Basic Pasta
- 2-1/2 cups gf flour
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 5 eggs
- 1 egg yolk
Place all the ingredients in a food
processor and pulse until the dough is just combined.
Dump out the dough onto a lightly gf floured surface
and knead several times until the dough is satiny and
elastic, about 10 minutes. Place the dough in a bowl
and cover. Let the dough rest for about 30 minutes before
Step 2: Make the Tomato-Meat
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 3/4 lb. lean ground beef
- 2 large garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 28oz. can plum tomatoes
- 1 16oz. can tomato puree
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1/2 teaspoon dried summer savory
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/8 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Heat the olive oil in a medium heavy
saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until
tender, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Add
the ground beef and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally
breaking up the large chunks as you stir, until the
meat is browned, about 5 minutes. Drain the fat off
Puree the plum tomatoes in a food
processor or a blender then add to the saucepan along
with the canned pureed tomatoes, dried basil, summer
savory, bay leaf and hot red pepper flakes. Bring to
a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring
occasionally. Adjust seasonings to taste with salt and
freshly ground black pepper.
Step 3: Make the filling
Cheese Ravioli Filling Ingredients:
- 1 cup ricotta cheese
- 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
- 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
- 1 egg
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- Pinch of nutmeg
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Mix the ingredients in a medium bowl.
Adjust seasonings to taste with salt and freshly ground
black pepper. Set aside.
Step 4: Make the sheets of pasta
Assemble the pasta machine. Start
at the lowest setting (usually they will have settings
1 through 6 1 being the widest setting). Cut
a small chunk off of the rested dough and knead several
Press the dough out with your hands
so that it is fairly flat (about 1/4 inch thickness).
Run the dough through the pasta machine. Lightly flour
the dough (with gf flour) if it threatens to stick.
Guide the dough as it comes out of the machine with
a flat hand. Take the pasta and fold into thirds.
Run it through the first press again
with the folded edges running perpendicular to the pasta
Set the rollers to 2 and run the sheet
through the machine. Keep rolling it through the machine,
decreasing the width of the rollers each time, until
you get to setting #5. Place the finished sheet of pasta
on a baking sheet dusted with cornmeal and cover with
plastic wrap. Repeat this process with the remaining
dough. Do not lay the sheets of pasta on top of each
other or they will stick together. Now you are ready
to make whatever kind of pasta you would like. For our
purposes this month we are going to focus on making
ravioli. It is quite simple to do once you get the hang
Step 5: Cut and fill the ravioli
Its easiest to work with one
sheet at a time. Lay one sheet on a lightly floured
surface and trim the ends so you have an even edge to
Cut 2x2 inch squares out of your rolled
Place 1 teaspoon of filling in the
center of one square.
Dip your fingertip in water and lightly
coat the outer edges of the square. Place a square on
top and press edges to seal (trying to eliminate all
If youd like you can use the
tines of a fork and press lightly on the outer edges
to help seal the ravioli and add a decorative touch
or you can trim the edges with a sharp knife.
The beauty of making homemade ravioli is that
part of the charm is that it looks rustic! Place the
squares on a large jelly roll pan dusted with cornmeal.
Step 6: Cook the ravioli
Boil for 4-6 minutes in a large pot
of salted water. Ravioli is done when it floats to the
surface and is al dente when tested. Carefully drain
in a colander and rinse briefly with warm water. If
you are not going to immediately serve lightly toss
with olive oil to prevent the ravioli from sticking
to one another.
Step 7: Serve
Divide the ravioli among 4-6 shallow
pasta bowls and ladle the sauce over the top. Garnish
with freshly grated parmesan cheese (optional). Serve
- To save time you can see that we laid
out several squares at a time and placed the filling on
top. Then wet the edges on all of the bottom squares then
seal. This makes the process go much faster and believe
me by the time you are done you will be looking for shortcuts!
- Be careful not to place the ravioli squares
in a warm part of your kitchen as you work they can
soften and stick together.
- As you finish with one sheet of pasta
and are getting ready to move onto another sheet
take your knife and scrape off your work surface and apply
a new dusting of flour. As you are dipping your finger into
the water and wetting the edges inevitably you will get
the work surface wet along with the flour on the board.
This will only create problems for you as you set a new
ravioli square on top.
- If you happen to have kids this is a
very fun dish to prepare together. Kids thoroughly
enjoy rolling out the dough and seeing what can be created
out of this (in their eyes) edible play dough!
- Making pasta can be a fun dish for a
dinner party. Have your guests roll up their sleeves and
help you crank out the sheets or fill the pasta. Pair the
experience with a little wine and some Italian music and
youve got yourself a fun evening for all with
the great reward of amazing homemade pasta at the end!
that youve got the hang of it and are looking for something
more adventurous we have several other ravioli recipes that
are absolutely delicious and well worth the effort!
Ravioli with Sage & Pumpkin
Ravioli with Basil
Stuffed Ravioli w/Tomato-Basil Coulis
Ravioli w/ Roasted Red Pepper Sauce